APRA’s Political Triumph
APRA’s landslide election victory was to an important degree the victory of Alan García. It confirmed the supremacy he had been able to build up since he was elected party leader in 1982. For Apristas it was the moment that the party had been awaiting for sixty years; and they had Garcia’s dynamic leadership to thank for getting the party into office at last. Also, APRA’s majority in Congress and the division of the opposition into two separate camps put the party and its leader into a position in which they enjoyed the political initiative. For good or for bad, the party’s political fortunes became intimately bound up with the public persona of Alan García.
KeywordsCommunist Party Presidential Election Urban Poor Political Force Municipal Election
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Notes and References
- 1.For voting patterns see the various works of Fernando Tuesta, especially Perú Política en Cifras (Lima: Friedrich Ebert Foundation, 1987). The figures quoted here (and in Tuesta) are percentages of valid votes. They are not percentages of the total vote including null and void votes. As of 1985 the system used in presidential elections was that to win outright a candidate had to win 50 per cent plus one of the total vote including null and void votes. So, though Garcia got 53.1 per cent of the valid vote he still theoretically did not win an absolute majority in terms of the total vote. In the event, a second round was avoided because Alfonso Barrantes who was the runner-up declined to stand for a second round.Google Scholar
- 2.See Peri Paredes and Griselda Tello, Pobreza Urbana y Trabajo Femenino, Lima: ADEC, 1988. Also interviews by the author with Cooperación Popular leaders in 1986 confirmed the overtly partisan purposes of PAIT.Google Scholar
- 5.The best and most detailed account of what happened and who was responsible is the Senate Commission’s report researched and written by senator Rolando Ames, ‘Informe al Congreso sobre los Sucesos de los Penales’ (Lima: OCISA, 1988). The massacre caused a particularly bad impression among European social democrats, though some Latin American leaders, notably Carlos Andrés Pérez of Venezuela, sought to back García up.Google Scholar